Michael B. Duff

Lubbock's answer to a question no one asked

Archive for July 2010

links for 2010-07-22

Written by Michael B. Duff

July 22, 2010 at 23:02

Posted in Uncategorized

Starcraft II available for early download

Blizzard is trying something strange and clever. The client is not available for digital purchase until June 27, but you can start your download of it now.

They’re basically letting you download the client in advance so you can beat the rush. They’re making digital downloads available on the same day as the retail release, a nice change from the Lich King download, which lagged behind the retail release by a week or two.

I’m starting my download now, and I’m glad I’m starting early. My estimated time is sitting at 12 hours. If I had to wait 12 hours on launch day, I would be…annoyed.

Written by Michael B. Duff

July 22, 2010 at 21:36

Posted in Games

Tagged with

links for 2010-07-21

  • The proposed "Cordoba House" overlooking the World Trade Center site – where a group of jihadists killed over 3000 Americans and destroyed one of our most famous landmarks – is a test of the timidity, passivity and historic ignorance of American elites. For example, most of them don’t understand that “Cordoba House” is a deliberately insulting term. It refers to Cordoba, Spain – the capital of Muslim conquerors who symbolized their victory over the Christian Spaniards by transforming a church there into the world’s third-largest mosque complex.
  • NEW YORK—At a press conference Tuesday, the NBC television network unveiled its new fall lineup of programs that will be canceled almost immediately after airing. "We could not be more excited for this season of soon-to-be-absent shows," said NBC chairman Jeff Gaspin, standing beneath an oversized "Must-Miss TV" banner. "Joining our Thursday night comedy lineup is the can't-win Father Shane in the 9:30 slot, followed by the never-going-to-be-given-a-chance news magazine Insight. And if you like drama, you're going to be crushed when we unfairly yank our critically acclaimed supernatural thriller Dark Riders after only four episodes." Gaspin added that fans would also be surprised by changes in store for some of their old favorites, specifically that all of them would be canceled.
    (tags: tv humor nbc)
  • Investors are understandably scared of the sovereign debt crisis unfolding in Europe. Amid their angst, however, they are ignoring a more likely, and significantly larger, debt catastrophe that is about to hit the nation with the second-largest economy in the world — Japan. Two decades of stimulative, low-interest-rate fiscal policy have made Japan the most indebted nation in the developed world, and as new Prime Minister Naoto Kan recently said, in his first address to Parliament, that situation is not sustainable. Japan has little choice but to raise interest rates substantially, with dire consequences far beyond its shores.
  • This makes me grin every time.
  • "We're not sure what the ultimate result will be, but it's clear that with new information through the full speech, a longer look needed to be taken," a White House official told CNN Wednesday. "The White House contacted the department last night about the case and agreed, based on her evidence, that it should be reviewed."
  • This is the kind of perfectly obvious thing that gets ignored in discussions of education policy.
  • Shirley Sherrod is not, by this accounting, a person out of touch with the racial history of America. Listen to her speech and it's clear this history is something she remembers vividly; her message to the NAACP audience seemed to be that if she can move past it, so can anyone else.

Written by Michael B. Duff

July 21, 2010 at 23:02

Posted in Uncategorized

links for 2010-07-20

Written by Michael B. Duff

July 20, 2010 at 23:01

Posted in Uncategorized

links for 2010-07-19

  • First, the state will pay a quarter of its public servants' salaries using the dinar. Second, all state companies will accept dinar payments. Lastly, some 600 commercial enterprises will also embrace this currency.
  • WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – A Purdue University researcher has used "econophysics" to show that under ideal circumstances free markets promote fair salaries for workers and do not support CEO compensation practices common today.
  • Ka-ching for “security” companies all round, as every bit of information that can be vacuumed up is recorded eight times and then dumped into a dozen different computer systems that can’t talk to each other! The government’s secret intelligence-gathering has cratered into a bottomless pit of wasteful, pointless, expensive makework that is not making Americans any safer, but is instead reaping huge profits for the herds of greedy contractors who aid them in recording so much information that nobody will ever in a million years find the few bits that might ever have been of any use.
  • I'm not saying America has a ruling class, but if it did, it would behave a lot like this.
  • But the best part of this whole tempest is watching an old TPM fave, former Rep. Chris "The Count" Chocola (R-IN), rip Lott right back. Chocola, who is now president of Club for Growth, goes straight for the kill, referencing Lott's 2002 comments about Strom Thurmond that cost him his leadership post: "To paraphrase the former Leader himself, if recent Senates had had more Jim DeMints and fewer Trent Lotts making economic policy, 'we wouldn't have had all these problems over all these years.'"
  • Krugman sees only the business investment that takes place when these buildings are rebuilt. He fails to see that the resources that are used to rebuild could be used to do other things if the World Trade Towers had not been attacked. We can never become richer by destroying resources and then replacing them. After the attack, the US economy is worse off in real terms, by two office buildings, about 12 million square feet of office space and thousands of productive people.
  • "There's a reason why it's dangerous for old farts to cross the street: if they don't die, their relatives can't claim their rent-controlled apartments."
  • "Private companies aren’t firing workers and hoarding cash because interest rates are too high. They’re doing so because there’s too much factory and labor capacity. Consumers aren’t cutting back on spending because loans are too expensive. They’re doing so because they just went on the wildest debt-fueled spending binge in U.S. history, and they’re trying to repair their balance sheets. Look, we’ve had twin bubbles in stocks and housing over the past decade and a half. They both popped. The fallout will be with us for a long, long time."
    (tags: economics)
  • Since markets these days automatically expect that banks in trouble will be bailed out by their home governments, the effect of such news is nowadays immediately transmitted to the sovereign debt of the country concerned.
  • Apple defends itself by comparing iPhone 4 to other smartphones.
    (tags: apple iphone)
  • The survey also reveals to a surprising degree how those involved in the policymaking and the political process tend to have a much rosier view of the economy than does the rest of the nation — and, in some cases, dramatically different impressions of leading officeholders, political forces and priorities for governing.
  • Prominence was assessed by taking the four most frequently cited papers published in any field by each scientist—not just climate science publications—and tallying the number of times those papers were cited by other researchers. Papers by climate researchers convinced of human effects were cited approximately 64 percent more often than papers by the unconvinced.
  • From a neutral economic analysis, handing the $100 billion to the bureaucrats as their salaries would allow them to buy "$100 billion worth" of goods and services. But in their capacity as bureaucrats, purchasing items on behalf of the US government, the incentives are different. There is no longer a presumption that money is only spent on things that (to the purchaser) are worth more than the money being spent.
    (tags: economics)

Written by Michael B. Duff

July 19, 2010 at 23:01

Posted in Uncategorized

links for 2010-07-18

Written by Michael B. Duff

July 18, 2010 at 23:01

Posted in Uncategorized

links for 2010-07-17

Written by Michael B. Duff

July 17, 2010 at 23:01

Posted in Uncategorized